Ujamaa in Tanzania





Ujamaa in Tanzania

When Tanzania gained independence from colonization, the country adopted the ideology of Ujamaa which translates to family hood. The country’s first president, Julius Nyerere, saw this new ideology as the best path towards social and economic sustainability in the country. Ujamaa has some distinct features, the first of which was rural development. Under Ujamaa, the government concentrated on developing rural areas to address imbalance in rural and urban areas. Another feature of Ujamaa was the creation of model villages where people lived and worked together as a community (Sheikheldin 91). In these villages, people worked on collective farms to promote social equality. Individuals could not claim any property, everything was communal. Under Ujamaa, President Nyerere also introduced universal primary education and improved access to health services in rural areas. These two programs were meant to further promote equity and encourage development in rural areas of the country. The emphasis on communal development in the country discouraged the idea of political and social elite as everyone was equal. Ujamaa also promoted discipline among leaders.

Although the socialist ideology of Ujamaa sounded good in theory, it failed to live up to its expectations in Tanzania. One reason for this is that the country relied on traditional methods of agriculture and failed to modernize (Keski̇n & Abdalla 298). This resulted in low output due to inefficiency. Additionally, the country only focused on subsistence farming which did not bring in any revenue. Secondly, the Ujamaa system had many administrative errors. The allocation of communal work spaces remained largely unproductive. Most of the crops grown were unsuited to the areas in terms of infertility of the land and other aspects such as weather and type of soil. The country also had poor infrastructural network, posing a challenge to agriculture which was the mainstay of the economy. Although Tanzania implemented the socialist ideology of Ujamaa to promote social equality in the country, poor implementation eventually led to failure of the program.

Works Cited

Keski̇n, İbrahim, and Mohd Juma Abdalla. “The Sociological Analysis Of The Failure Of Ujamaa Policy.” Academic Review of Humanities and Social Sciences 2.3 (2019): 297-313.

Sheikheldin, Gussai H. “Ujamaa: Planning and managing development schemes in Africa, Tanzania as a case study.” The Journal of Pan African Studies 8.1 (2015): 78-96.